Community Empowerment



Child poverty in South Africa is multi-sectoral, with the majority of children suffering from multiple deprivations simultaneously. According to Statistics South Africa 62% of children are multidimensionally poor. Two-thirds of children in rural areas are multidimensionally poor and income-poor. 

The highest multidimensional poverty rates are found amongst children residing in the Limpopo Province. It is for this reason that, together with our partner, Shambala Private Game Reserve, we are working to make a difference to the lives of learners in the Vaalwater area and district.  

Moshia Secondary School, E.A. Davidson Primary School and Boschdraai Primary School have been equipped with EMS Foundation growzones from which vegetables are harvested and cooked for children providing them with a consistent and healthy source of nourishment.  

As  part of an on-going initiative, and working with the local mayor, in June 2022 hundreds of children, who urgently need school socks and shoes, were identified and these basic but much needed items provided to them. 

Education is the key to success and increased access to education can contribute to a reduction in poverty.  The EMS Foundation and Shambala have supplied Tutu Desks to school children in the Vaalwater area. At the beginning of 2022 the EMS Foundation also acquired desks and chairs for pupils at the Moshia Secondary School. In 2020 the Shambala Reserve upgraded classrooms at the Moshia Secondary School.  

The EMS Foundation and Shambala are committed to continuing to offer the children and the broader community of Vaalwater in Limpopo food security, investments into school infrastructure and attention to individual needs, thereby removing barriers that negatively affect their well-being and hinder their development. 

July 2022

Image Credit: Shambala Private Game Reserve

©The EMS Foundation 2022. All Rights Reserved.



Investing in Childhood Education in the Limpopo Province of South Africa

The South African Schools Act 1996 (Act 84 of 1996) was aimed at ensuring that all learners have access to quality education without discrimination. 

Sadly, the World Economic Forum competitiveness index ranks South Africa’s overall education system at 140 out of 144 countries and its maths and science education at 143 out of 144. 

The EMS Foundation has empowered schools that are performing well, schools who have inspirational headmasters and headmistresses, the schools who are creating communities of learning where the power of education as a tool to change lives is recognised. 

Moshia Secondary School 

Moshia Secondary School is situated in Alma in the Vaalwater district of Limpopo Province, South Africa  has two hundred and sixty-five pupils ranging in age from  fourteen to twenty-two years of age.

The EMS Foundation has continued to invest into the infrastructure of this very successful school in 2022.  We have donated thirty-five new desks and chairs.

We visited the school to acknowledge and congratulate the pupils who have achieved greatness.

We have provided growzones for the school where vegetables are grown and harvested all year round for the pupils, their families and the community of Alma.

E.A. Davidson Primary School 

E.A. Davidson is a primary school in Vaalwater in Limpopo with three hundred and twenty-six pupils. The EMS Foundation proudly supports this very successful school.  

Representatives of the EMS Foundation visited the school this year to acknowledge the incredible achievements of the teachers and pupils who continue to strive towards greatness. 

The EMS Foundation has provided a growzone to the school which provides meals for the pupils and produce for their families and the local community.

Boschdraai Primary School

Boschdraai Primary School situated in Vaalwater, has two hundred and twenty-two pupils between the ages of six to fifteen years of age.  

The EMS Foundation acknowledged the good work of the teachers and pupils with a personalised visit and an encouraging gift for each child. 

The EMS Foundation has also provided a grownzone from which vegetables are harvested and cooked for the children providing them with healthy meals, furthermore the vegetables grown are distributed to the greater community. 

Every single day the teachers at these schools are doing their best with limited resources, transforming their schools and inspiring their pupils.  The EMS Foundation is calling on the Department of Education to make sure that these schools are adequately provided for so that they may continue to prosper. 

In addition to the investment that is showcased here, the EMS Foundation has also supplied 257 pairs of school shoes and 344 pairs of school socks for children who were especially identified as needing assistance in Vaalwater schools in 2022.

©The EMS Foundation 2022. All Rights Reserved.




Education can be described as the process where an individual acquires or imparts knowledge to another.  All children, around the world have the right to an education.  Investing in education is not just the right thing to do, it’s the smart thing to do.  

Unfortunately, in South Africa, education still remains a privilege to many.  A school education should provide a place where individuals develop skills essential to daily living, where individuals learn social norms, develop judgement and reasoning and learn how to discern right from wrong. 

There are various types of education, traditional schooling dictates the way a person’s educational success is measured.  Individuals who attend school and have attained a higher level of education are considered more employable and likely to earn more. 

According to the Centre for Global Development, in developing countries, there is a projected 10 per cent increase in a person’s future income for every additional year of education. 

Broken and Unequal: The State of Education in South Africa

The right to quality education includes having a school where learners are safe to learn and have the adequate infrastructure and facilities to do so, but research carried out by Amnesty International revealed that this is not the reality for many learners in South Africa.

According to Amnesty International, South Africa’s educational system is characterised by a crumbling infrastructure, overcrowded classrooms and relatively poor education outcomes.  Unfortunately, this unsatisfactory system is perpetuating inequality and as a result failing too many of its children, with the poor hardest hit according to a new Report.

The EMS Foundation recognises the fact that there are many talented young people who can achieve world-class results if given the correct opportunities.  The foundation has discovered that there are many schools that are offering quality education and these deserving institutions are receiving our support. 

The EMS Foundation Investment into Education in Sandbaai in Hermanus, Western Cape of South Africa

An example of a very successful school is the Hermanus Waldorf School, which is situated in Sandbaai in Hermanus in the Western Cape of South Africa. The majority of the pupils who attend this school come from the previously disadvantaged communities of Zwelihle and Mount Pleasant.  

Traditionally this school offered only a junior school education. The EMS Foundation has donated the costs of building three classrooms and ablution facilities so that the school can extend the opportunity to their learners in order to offer a high school education to their pupils from 2023.

©The EMS Foundation 2022. All Rights Reserved.




“In life, the most persistent and urgent question is: What are you doing for others?”

Martin Luther King Jr

Since its inception, the EMS Foundation, has taken up the call to improve and uplift the lives of vulnerable South Africans and create a caring and truly sustainable future for all.

As a social justice organisation, we cannot ignore the fact that more than four hundred people have lost their lives in the recent floods in KwaZulu Natal. Significant damage has been caused to an aging infrastructure, including the water and electricity supply, roads and bridges have been washed away, damage has been caused to schools and health facilities.

State corruption is endemic and the South African government has seemingly failed ordinary South Africans. The EMS Foundation has therefore taken the decision to support the KZN flood victims by financially donating to the non-governmental organisation and disaster relief group Gift of the Givers as we believe that this organisation is a trusted entity and most closely represents our mandates.  

©The EMS Foundation 2022. All Rights Reserved.




Inspiring Greatness

The EMS Foundation has proudly supported the founder of the Overstrand Boxing Club, Mzi Damesi, and the children and youth that have attended the club since 2019.

Against all odds and despite his humble beginnings and the present-day rudimentary club-house, Mzi Damesi has managed to produce South African national champion boxers.

Mzi Damesi plays an important role in the community, children who would otherwise be on the streets in the afternoon after school attend his boxing gym. They are inspired to train, to do well at the gym and in the classroom.

At its simplest, community empowerment refers to measures designed to increase the degree of autonomy and self-determination in people and in communities in order to enable them to represent their interests in a self-determined way while acting on their own authority.

The EMS Foundation is launching an extensive project in 2022 which will empower the children and the youth living in Zwelihle in Hermanus, a seaside town situated south-east of Cape Town in South Africa.

The EMS Foundation will be funding the construction of a new premises for the Overstrand Whale Boxing Club and the construction of the first classrooms and adjoining cloak rooms for the brand new Hermanus Waldorf High School.

This short film commissioned by the EMS Foundation serves as an introduction to both these exciting projects.

Nicola du Pisanie founded the award-winning architectural practise called Stonewood Design, based in the United Kingdom, in 2010.

Nicola du Pisanie, a principal member of the company and her team have generously undertaken to envision a new space for the OWBC. These images are their vision for the new Overstrand Whale Boxing Club premises.

Simon Pfotenhauer, the Director of Stage 5 Architects, based in Cape Town, South Africa, is currently translating these incredible designs into workable plans.

Supporters of the EMS Foundation in the United Kingdom have expressed an interest in supporting these projects and the members of the Overstrand Whale Boxing Club.

Saving our planet, empowering people, advancing economic growth these are one and the same fight. We must connect the dots between climate change, water scarcity, energy shortages, global health, food security and the empowerment of communities. Solutions to one problem must be a solution to all. (Ban Ki-Moon).

©️The EMS Foundation 2022. All Rights Reserved.



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